School’s A green place to grow |

School’s A green place to grow

Daily Staff ReportVail CO, Colorado
Special to the Daily Special to the DailyScience teacher Brett Falk spots fourth grader Gabriela Leeds on the bouldering wall.

VAIL With its bright colors, a bouldering wall on its isde, and messages for change emblazoned throughout, the National Outdoor Leadership school bus pulled onto Vail Mountain School one morning last week. The bus, powered by a converted diesel engine that uses recycled vegetable oil, is on a two-year Climate for Change tour across the country.The East Vail private school, which has adopted the slogan make VMS a greener place to grow, has been trying to lessen its impact on the environmental since construction began on its new campus in 2003.

The school has a synthetic soccer field that doesnt require watering or fertilizing and students plant trees each year and volunteer for trail and river cleaups. Many students are either carpooling or riding bikes to school. The school also tries to send e-mail whenever possible (instead of using paper) and students are encourage to bring lunch in resusable containers rather than paper bags. This year, students and faculty began a schoolwide recycling program and are exploring the idea of formally becoming a green school based on Alliance for Energy Conservation standards. Many are carpooling or riding their bikes to school and there is.Students learned about how the leaderships biodiesel engine works and the solar-power system that powers electronic entertainment systems. I liked their ideas on ethics and how they try to lead by example, 10th grader Sean Minett said.They really motivated us to make a difference in the world, added 10th grader Ruben Saucedo.

For more information on the National Outdoor Leadership school bus, visit

Fourth grader David Ortiz hops onto the bus’s bouldering wall.

Fourth grader Joey Travers reaches for his next handhold on the bouldering wall.

Fourth grader Matty Brinkmann make her way up the side of the bus.

Vail Mountain Schools fourth graders learned a lot about alternative from this bus, which is powered by used vegetable oil and the sun.

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